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Federal appeals court strikes down concealed carry ban in Illinois

December 11, 2012 - Andrea Johnson
The 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Illinois struck down a ban on carrying concealed weapons in that state today, according to the Associated Press. The story says that legislators now have 180 days to write a law that legalizes carrying a concealed weapon.

Judge Richard Posner, writing the majority opinion, wrote: "There is no suggestion that some unique characteristic of criminal activity in Illinois justifies the state's taking a different approach from the other 49 states. If the Illinois approach were demonstrably superior, one would expect at least one or two other states to have emulated it."

This decision will undoubtedly please the NRA contingent, among them some of my relatives, and dismay people who worry about urban crime. Just this past week I saw a posting from a Facebook friend about a shooting he had witnessed just down the street from the house he lives in with his wife and toddler. He was terrified for his family. I didn't hear who the shooter was, but I've certainly seen enough stories on the wire about gang-related shootings in certain Twin Cities neighborhoods to have my suspicions. Illinois may have similar problems. On the other hand, gang bangers aren't likely to be seeking legal concealed carry permits anyway. The people who are want to be able to defend themselves from the criminals.

I've never had much interest in guns myself, but I do favor the constitutional right to bear arms. I just wish there was some other way to prevent the violence that so terrified my Facebook friend and his family the other day.

What do you think about the decision made by the federal appeals court?


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